Originally published May 12 2015
UK's version of Obamacare nears breaking point, finances 'cut to the bone'
by J. D. Heyes
(NaturalNews) It ought to be "Exhibit A" in the case against transforming the American healthcare system into a single-payer version of Obamacare: The collapsing state of Britain's National Health System.
As reported recently by the Daily Mail, the pride of Britain -- it's healthcare system -- is close to total disintegration, and officials who run it have had to cut services "to the bone" in order to keep it afloat.
That, they say, will only work for so long.
The Mail quoted from an open letter published in the country's most prestigious medical publication, the British Medical Journal, by Dr. Fiona Godlee, editor-in-chief of the magazine, and her colleagues.
The NHS is "stretched close to [the] breaking point," as its finances have been "cut to the bone," the letter noted.
The doctors said that the public's safety is increasingly at risk and the next five years will prove to be the "most challenging" to NHS that England has ever faced.
The blame game begins, but the fact is the system is collapsing
The letter came a day after The BMJ published a piece stating that efforts to cut the amount of salt in food have been "derailed" by ministers in a way that may have cost 6,000 lives; the article apparently said nothing about the fact that the government wanted to mandate food content in the first place, and therefore mandate personal behavior (which is what governments do when they are fully in charge of services and have limited resources).
The Mail further reported:
The article said the Government had undermined a successful salt-reduction programme by replacing it with the 'responsibility deal', which focused on health initiatives led by the food industry.
Godlee and the other authors argued that the NHS is "still reeling" from the "costly and distracting" reforms of former Tory [conservative] health secretary Andrew Lansley. They added that the NHS has been forced to cope with almost no increases in funding in real terms since 2010, while growing demands have been placed on the system by an aging population.
"Extreme cuts to social care have exacerbated the pressures," the authors wrote, warning that public safety is at risk, adding that 13 NHS trusts are under fire because of concerns about the quality of care being delivered.
Jeremy Hunt, England's health secretary, admitted that the Coalition government's health reforms "weren't very popular," but he insisted they had been implemented under the "right principle."
"The only place the NHS is being 'cut to the bone' is in Wales, where [the] Labour [Party] control[s] the budget," Andrew Percy, a member of the Commons health select committee, said.
"In England, the NHS budget is growing and such partisan and patently incorrect comments by the BMJ are unacceptable in an election period -- especially just a day after they accused the Coalition of failings over salt intake," he added.
Obama wants the same system
The same thing is beginning to happen to Obamacare exchanges in the U.S.
As reported recently by The Washington Post, nearly half of state Obamacare health insurance exchanges are in financial trouble:
Many of the online exchanges are wrestling with surging costs, especially for balky technology and expensive customer call centers -- and tepid enrollment numbers. To ease the fiscal distress, officials are considering raising fees on insurers, sharing costs with other states and pressing state lawmakers for cash infusions.
Many of the struggling states are contemplating turning over their exchanges to Healthcare.gov, the federal exchange, which may or may not solve their problems or even be feasible, depending on what the U.S. Supreme Court decides in King v. Burwell; plaintiffs in the case claim that use of taxpayer funds to subsidize insurance purchases by low-income people through the federal exchange is unconstitutional, because the Obamacare law only mentions people signing up through state exchanges as qualifying for subsidies.
Either way, during his first campaign, then-Sen. Barack Obama claimed he eventually wants a Britain-style single-payer scheme in America. You can see him say so in this video here.
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